Total Run Time of 90 minutes or less. Have I seen them all? Yes, but that doesn't mean I'll vouch…
Hell Is for Heroes
The brutal realities that faced every G.I. during World War II
World War II drama where the action centers around a single maneuver by a squad of GIs in retaliation against the force of the German Siegfried line. Reese joins a group of weary GIs unexpectedly ordered back into the line when on their way to a rest area. While most of the men withdraw from their positions facing a German pillbox at the far side of a mine-field, half a dozen men are left to protect a wide front. By various ruses, they manage to convince the Germans that a large force is still holding the position. Then Reese leads two of the men in an unauthorized and unsuccessful attack on the pillbox, in which the other two are killed; and when the main platoon returns, he is threatened with court-martial. Rather that face the disgrace, and in an attempt to show he was right, he makes a one-man attack on the pillbox.
You got no business up here. When the Krauts come, they'll capture you and pull your fingernails. Then you'll tell them everything they want to know.
-Pvt. John Reese
Steve McQueen leaves his "King of Cool" persona at the door as Private John Reese, a man that looks like the walking dead in a film that dispenses with the escapist World War II Adventure Movie tropes of the time and decidedly tells the tale of a group of soldiers simply trying to survive in foxhole warfare.
Even the usual, almost necessary, melodramatic clichés of WWII dramas isn't present in the film. These boys still want to go home, but we don't hear about the girl that's waiting for them or…
For many film fans the name Don Siegel seems synonymous with Clint Eastwood. Don directed Eastwood five times during his career, and is someone who Clint heralds as one of his chief influences on his own directorial style. In Hell Is For Heroes Siegel directs another Hollywood Legend, Steve McQueen, in an early role that cemented his image as a tempestuous maverick tough-guy.
WWII films sometimes suffer from the Hollywood factor. This film is apparently set in France during 1944, but this couldn't look more like California if it tried. McQueen again gets the chance to be the hero with demons in his head, and is undoubtedly the star, but the support players here all do their bit in a…
Whenever they portray a war film no matter if it's not a true story, you have to respect it. Every soldier that survived has a different story and most war movies are made close enough to how hell was.
Steve McQueen is still a hero even so we lost the great legend some time ago. If you haven't seen much of his films, this is a damn good one to start off with. Soon as he appears on screen you know you're expecting him to steal the show which he does.
The film itself is entertaining enough but not to give anything away ends quite quickly.
Don Siegel was very passionate on his directing and I need to see more of his fine work as this turned out to be a surprising like.
Apparently, I do like war films. I just need to find the right ones.
This film features Steve McQueen as a brooding, angry loner of a soldier, Bobby Darin as a comedic looter, and Bob Newhart in his first film role. It has James Coburn looking surprisingly young, because I thought he was born rugged and weathered. They make up for it by covering him in engine grease.
It's not a particularly complex film. It spends the first third setting the stage and letting us get to know our characters, and then it lands us in the bleak situation--our heroes are on the front lines of WWII without enough support and have to trick the Nazis into thinking there's more…
The most terrifying last 30 seconds in all cinema.
I seemed to revisit the career of Steve McQueen very five years....well I decided to check out Hell Is For Heroes again. In this one McQueen
and a small American squad must hold off German attack. Joining McQueen are James Coburn (a Magnificent Seven reunion with McQueen) and Bob Newhart (he got an "introducing Bob Newhart" credit".
The action is decent. But some of the night battles were more than a little confusing as the screen was so dark. McQueen does well in his "loner" role. The rest of the cast does not have much to do.....other than to die. Although Newhart as an office clerk accidentally stuck on the front lines has some humorous moments.
Movie uses stock footage…
Steve McQueen has a filmography where his best films are pretty obvious - The Great Escape, The Magnificent 7, Bullitt, Junior Bonner, The Getaway - and because he did not make that many films there are, sadly, few neglected gems. However, Hell Is for Heroes is a film that more people need to make time for.
Don Siegel's Hell is for Heroes is an immensely cynical film. It is a small-scale war picture, in the mould of Samuel Fuller's infantry pictures. However, it has none of Fuller's camaraderie, but all of his lean toughness. Perhaps, the reason that people do not talk about it is sheer level of brutality. It has very little likeability, especially with Steve McQueen loner-lead. McQueen…
Kudos for the grim final. That's the way to end a war film.
Reese (Steve McQueen) is posted to a platoon in France during the Second World War. His platoon gets sent to the front with inadequate support, and they must defend their position against superior German forces.
This is a poor film with a weak plot and a flimsy script. Fortunately, both Don Siegel (director) and McQueen went on to greater things.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Hell Is for Heroes tells the story of a small squad of American soldiers. It’s 1944 and the group has seen its share of action on the European lines. Now, they’re enjoying a break in a bombed-out village near the Siegfried Line.
Private John Reese, played by Steve McQueen, arrives with orders to join the squad. Reese, a former master sergeant demoted to private for insubordination, wastes little time alienating himself from the rest of the men. Rumors swirl that the squad’s next orders will send them home. The men are giddy. Reese is forlorn. The war has become his life. Later that night, he disobeys orders and heads into town for a drink.
But, of course, the squad doesn’t…
A handful of American soldiers are assigned to cover a disproportionately large sector of the front at the Siegfried Line, a seemingly impossible mission against a much greater number of enemy troops. They have to use all their resources and cunning trying to hold their position until the arrival of reinforcements.
Gritty war drama that manages to distinguish itself from the rest of the genre due to its anti-heroic message (a sign of things to come during the 60's) and its pessimistic finale. Don Siegel manages to craft an interesting movie despite the ordinariness of the script and the constrained budget he had at his disposal.
Steve McQueen in one of his earliest starring roles is the heart of the…
A relatively forgettable war drama. A company of American soldiers, who believe they are being sent back to the states, are suddenly reassigned to the German front during WWII. Then, a group of only six soldiers are left behind to defend that position while the rest of the company fights elsewhere. The film tries to be very character driven; these six soldiers are on a special mission so lets focus on them. But none of them are particularly interesting. At all. The only one who is is Steve McQueen’s character, Reese, who takes charge of the men and leads several to their death, then feels obligated to sacrifice his own life in return. I understand it is all about loyalty to your comrades, doing your duty and responsibility, but I didn’t find it particularly engaging or interesting.
Hell for Heroes is a solid war film where a group of US soldiers have to hold a German line for a prolonged period. An all-star cast of Steve McQueen, James Coburn, and Bob Newhart, among others.
Hell for Heroes is a good film that felt like an early inspiration for M*A*S*H, with its quirky stunts and dialogue. But it made me think about how rare it is to see a bad war film. Most films about war are highly regarded. Even the crappy ones have their dedicated action followers. The only one that really comes to mind is Uwe Boll's 2008 film 1968 Tunnel Rats. Boy did I get derailed quickly here.
Hell for Heroes is rarely mentioned in…
The most terrifying last 30 seconds in all cinema.
In early June, 2013, my best friend killed herself.
She took a cab to the middle of nowhere and vanished,…
Bleak and melancholic films for people caught in the downward spiral.